Dear Fellow Sergeant,
There is no better way for me to describe the events of the past week than The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly. Please click on the following link and read the article for a frame of reference.
Police Officers Jason Rivera, Wilbert Mora, and Sumit Sulan: Three young men dedicated to helping others and keeping New York City safe. Together they dispelled the false narrative that cop-hating politicians have been force-feeding society. Wise and brave beyond their years, they were dedicated and determined to bring positive changes to our city.
In doing so, Officers Rivera, 22, and Mora, 27, gave their lives. Officer Sulan, 29, ensured that their killer will never kill again. We owe Officers Rivera and Mora a debt of gratitude that can never be repaid. It is their families who will forever wish their loved ones could be given a second chance in life. And we can never thank Officer Sulan enough for his gallantry under fire.
To all our fallen families, the NYPD NEVER forgets. We never have – and we never will.
While sitting in St. Patrick’s Cathedral surrounded by many public officials at the funeral for PO Rivera, I was disgusted to my core. Some of the same bureaucrats whose villainization of the police was the bedrock for the hostile environment that got these officers killed, were elbowing their way to the front of the church for choice-seating at the major media event.
I watched with revulsion as many of them held their phones in their hands, texting constantly, oblivious to the solemnity of the affair. Calling it classless doesn’t begin to describe their reprehensible behavior. They refused to acknowledge the thunderous applause for calls for change to the perverted and obscene laws they created and foisted upon the public.
I wonder why they even attended this grave affair when it is them – and them alone – who purposely divided this city for their own political relevancy and expediency.
The likes of Brooklyn charter-school teacher Chris Flanigan and actress Jacqueline Guzman inserting themselves into this conversation is disgraceful.
Mr. Flanigan’s Instagram post encouraged violence, which he recoined as “reciprocity” against the police, while Ms. Guzman ranted online about the inconvenience of street closures because of PO Rivera’s funeral. To them, I ask where they were and what they were doing during the height of the COVID-19 epidemic when Police Officers didn’t have the option or convenience to stay home?
You can teach, audition, or act in a virtual setting, but you can’t protect the lives of others by Skyping or Zooming. Police Officers are some of the best teachers – and actors on the planet. We perform these roles every day – to protect all New Yorkers, including people like them who loathe us.
This Wednesday, the streets around St. Pat’s will again be closed to traffic so I urge Ms. Guzman to take the day off.
The good citizens of the greatest city in the world will be joining members of the greatest police department in the world to mourn Officer Mora – the youngest child of Dominican immigrants and a true son of New York. The streets will be lined with police personnel from throughout the country, as well as law-abiding citizens who believe in the rule of law and support the NYPD.
As sad as the funeral will be, the good will outweigh both the bad and the ugly as we bid farewell to a man who took a pledge to make a positive difference – and paid for that commitment with his life.
Fraternally,Vincent J. Vallelong
Sergeants Benevolent Association